Turkey is conducting accession negotiations with the European Union (EU), since 2005. Environment constitutes one of the significant Chapters in acquis communautaire. Water Framework Directive (WFD) of the EU, which was adopted in 2000, comprises one of the prominent legislation in water related acquis. As a candidate country Turkey is –in principle- obliged to get in line with the WFDin time of membership. For this purpose, efforts of Turkey have gained momentum particularly after 2003. This report discusses one of the outputs of these efforts, namely the “Draft National Implementation Plan- Water Framework Directive (2000/60/EC)” in light of the specific WFD requirements.
The Draft Plan is a step forward with respect to WFD implementation in Turkey. However, the bulk of the steps are yet to be taken. The Draft Plan covered most of the areas to be handled within the context of the WFD, but the risks associated with the transboundary aspects of water management as embedded in the WFD is largely ignored. The main contribution of the Draft Plan is that Turkey has defined an anchor for WFD implementation process. It will be a reference document for further work. Public authorities on national, regional and local levels are obliged to perform certain duties compliant with the Draft Plan. Therefore, on the rhetorical level, the Draft Plan has a great potential for triggering the WFD tasks on multiple levels. The realization of this potential will ultimately rely on the fact that whether due consideration is given to the terms of the Draft Plan; i.e. roles and responsibilities of relevant organizations, and timetables.
The Water acquis in the European Union and the Water Framework Directive
The Draft Plan: An Anchorage for WFD implementation in Turkey